Kaspersky Internet Security for Mac: What makes it different?

It’s always important to protect your investments against unnecessary risks — nowhere is that truer than on your Mac. Even the most efficient, expensive hardware can become a liability if infected with malware.

Losing vital private information like passwords or financial info can have major consequences. That’s why it’s critical to supplement your Mac’s existing protection with another line of defense.

But what to choose? The malware protection market is full of options — but how can you tell which ones are worth the trouble? To help resolve that question once and for all, I took a closer look at Kaspersky Internet Security, a leading antivirus tool. Here’s what I found: 

Features of Kaspersky Internet Security for Mac

Kaspersky has one of the most comprehensive suites of antivirus tools available for Mac. Here’s some of what this workhorse program offers: 

  1. Scans: Kaspersky app offers a range of scanning options, including quick scans, selective scans, and full scans. The app can even perform antivirus scans on external devices like USB drives. If you have overlapping scanning needs, the app can also handle multiple targeted scans at the same time (without slowing down at all). 
  2. Protection Center: The app's protection center is the hub for all things regarding your Mac’s security status. At a glance, you’re able to see the app’s security recommendations and how well-protected your computer is at any given moment. 
  3. Updater: Kaspersky actively protects against security vulnerabilities by helping you update your applications. The updater checks for missing updates and installs them for you, so you’re always running the most secure versions of your apps. 
  4. Privacy: This tab accesses a variety of services to help keep you safe while browsing the web. These range from blocking access to your webcam to preventing websites from tracking you as you browse. You can also choose to configure a built-in password manager and a VPN.
  5. Internet security: Kaspersky’s browser plugins add another layer of security to your internet use. These tools include a firewall that blocks attacks before you even see them and a URL filter that helps redirect you away from harmful or compromised web addresses. 
  6. Safe Money: Kaspersky’s Safe Money feature offers a new way to secure your financial details while shopping online. This feature creates a separate secure browser whenever you’re entering financial details. Whether you’re checking your bank balance or entering your payment details on Amazon, this tool ensures that you’re the only one who can see what’s happening.
Set it up, knock it down:

Kaspersky provides an easy way to stay on top of your Mac security with scheduled scans. Just specify the type of scan and when you want it to happen, and get on with your life — the app will provide the results when finished. This works great for recurring weekly or daily scans.

Kaspersky Internet Security: What makes it stand out?

With so many developers cashing in on the antivirus market, it can be difficult to sort out which ones actually offer decent protection. Kaspersky stands out among dozens of competitors for several reasons:

  • Effective: Kaspersky’s detection rates are some of the highest available on the consumer antivirus market. The app’s scans scored perfect detection rates from AV-TEST and AV-Comparatives, two leading independent head-to-head antivirus tests. These tests use a wide variety of simulated malware, so Kaspersky’s success shows that it can handle anything you throw at it. 
  • Diversified: Kaspersky has a mixed approach to security that’s well-suited to the current online landscape. Rather than focusing exclusively on one type of threat, the app addresses multiple points of vulnerability, from your webcam to payment portals.
  • Intuitive: Nicely designed and easy to use, Kaspersky wins points in the user experience department. Even better, many of its features don’t need any manual input — they work in the background while you focus on the tasks that matter. 

That being said, Kaspersky isn’t perfect. While it does offer comprehensive protection from viruses and malware, it doesn’t do much to address other types of system junk. While it doesn’t pose as much of a security threat, this useless data can still slow your Mac’s performance unnecessarily. 

Viruses and beyond

Kaspersky is more tilted towards malware detection for which its deserves its worldwide acclaim. But speaking of Macs, viruses are not as common as regular computer junk. An ordinary user is much more annoyed by messy folders, unchecked apps, and tons of outdated files. If you’d like to deal with these, check out tools like CleanMyMac X. Unlike Kaspersky, it adds a suite of other useful tools like a comprehensive app uninstaller and a system junk detector. You can download its free demo here — it’s notarized by Apple. 

Is Kaspersky safe?

Kaspersky’s impressive record in head-to-head tests makes it one of the most effective antivirus programs out there. From that perspective, it’s certainly safer than many of its competitors.

Plus, Kaspersky provides fixes for issues that many other antivirus programs ignore, adding another point to its safety rating. 

Good for kids:

If your kids are also Mac users, Kaspersky’s Safe Kids features can provide them with online security as well. From simple fixes — like limiting screen time or website access — to social media and activity monitoring, these features provide tools to match any parenting style. It’s never too early for kids to pick up safe browsing habits.

That’s not to say that Kaspersky isn’t free from its fair share of issues. After the developer was implicated in a 2015 hack that stole data from a U.S. government agency, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security banned Kaspersky Labs products from all government computers in 2017. 

The company denied the allegations, and has since committed to more transparency and accountability. Still, even if you don’t handle sensitive government documents, it’s important to keep the developer’s recent troubles in mind. 

Kaspersky Review: The verdict

Kaspersky has what it takes to stand out in a crowded and competitive field. Thoughtful touches like Safe Money and Safe Kids address vulnerabilities that other providers ignore.

With its multi-pronged approach to security and impressive detection rates, it’s no surprise that many people look past some of the dubious press associated with Kaspersky.. 

Still, it’s far from perfect. Kaspersky doesn’t have a solution for non-malicious files that still rob space and performance from your hard disk. While not as urgent as ransomware, these issues are still serious for many Mac users.

For an app that offers comparable virus protection with a wider set of tools for uninstalling unwanted apps and managing your hard disk, give CleanMyMac X a try instead. Or see our chart of top 5 Mac cleaning apps. 

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